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Clippard: Strasburg can throw scouting reports in trash

(By John McDonnell - TWP)

Stephen Strasburg said he didn't look at the scouting reports for the Pittsburgh Pirates before Tuesday's game. Didn't seem to hurt much. The theory is that as Strasburg faces better teams, and hitters who have seen him before, he won't be able to get away with such a move. Reliever Tyler Clippard doesn't subscribe to that theory.

"You could tell any hitter in the world that 100 [mph] painted on the black is coming, and they're still not gonna be able to hit it good," Clippard said Thursday morning to 106.7 The Fan's Sports Junkies. "For him, he's able to command everything for strikes, so it kind of makes it easy. But it's not always gonna be like that, I'm sure he's gonna make some adjustments and and hitters are gonna make adjustments on him, but his secondary stuff and his stuff just in general is good enough to get guys out. He can just throw that scouting report in the trash can, in my opinion."

(More on Strasburg later, because the best part of this interview came when the Junks asked Clippard if he advertises his career when he goes out in D.C.

"I try not to," he said. "I feel like if I use that card, then I don't got any game, you know what I mean?"

Then they asked if, for $2,000, he would go out for a night of merriment while wearing his trademark goggles.

"Two Gs sounds good," he said. "Sign me up. Let me know where to be, and I'll be there. That's a no-brainer."

Photos, please.)

Back to Strasburg. E.B. from the Junkies was in the Nats' clubhouse before Strasburg's debut, and he observed that the pitcher seemed remarkably detached from the madness.

"Yeah, I'm pretty sure he's a robot," Clippard agreed. "I don't really get it, actually. I'm right there with you on that one. Especially for how young he is and all the things that are going on around him. It might be ignorance, it might be just not really realizing what the heck's going on, but I'm pretty sure he does, because he's a pretty smart kid. So knowing that he knows what the hecks' going on and him being able to deal with it like he does is pretty cool to watch."

Aside from being a win vulture and the league leader in forcing hitters to swing and miss, Clippard isn't a bad quote at all. More highlights.

On the Nats' clubhouse: Ours has got to be up there. It's pretty awesome. It's got everything you need. It's got a frickin' steam room in there. You know, I feel like I'm at a resort or something every day, it's so nice."

On whether Strasburg really hit a legit 103 on the radar: I would say no, but you know what, who knows? It could be. It's one of those things that you don't really know. Those guns can be a little weird at times and read low. There was also 92s up there for his fastball, and that ain't happening, either.

On whether he resents the Strasburg bandwagon: I don't resent it at all, no. I get it. I'm more of a guy who kind of understands the business side of things, and this town, baseball's still new here. And we haven't done anything, we haven't won anything, we haven't put a winner on the field. So it's understandable. I know in the next couple of months that it's going to change dramatically. I think we're going to win and we're going to be right there in September, and Strass is gonna keep doing what he's doing, and it's all just good stuff. So if fans come out for his starts and we start winning, they'll come out for the playoff push in September. That's what we're shooting for and that's what we're looking forward to.

On Strasburg being married at 21: You've got to know the guy, because it makes perfect sense with the way he is. And I think they're perfect for each other. So I can't really hate on him, because he found a good girl and he locked her up, you know what I mean? It was his decision. But there again, he's got the world at his fingertips as far as that goes, so it's frustrating at times, but he can do his thing.

On whether the Nats can compete for the NL East this year: It depends. I think we're close right now for sure. If a couple guys get hot, we definitely have the potential to go on a run this year. I think looking forward - which you don't really like to do during the season, but everybody's human and you're gonna do that anyway - definitely from this year moving forward we're gonna be in the hunt pretty much year in and year out. With all the things we've got going on here, for sure, definitely.

By Dan Steinberg  |  June 10, 2010; 4:12 PM ET
Categories:  Nats  
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Next: Rico Labbe's World Cup


Anyone know exactly what style of glasses Clippard wears? I know they're Oakleys. Does anyone know which Oakley model? (Reason I ask is that I was discussing it with a friend and we had a disagreement about it.)

Posted by: 1995hoo | June 10, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

The Junkies are obsessed with Strasburg being married at 21. Now I am not saying I get it either, but seriously its crazy how they 0 in on that.

Posted by: alex35332 | June 10, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Clippard looks a lot like a guy I used to work with at the Zoo. Reliever by night, PhD Ornithologist by day?

Posted by: Colm1 | June 10, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

> Clippard isn't a bad quote at all


Posted by: kjhealey | June 10, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

The Junkies know absolutely nothing about baseball. One of them thought that the minor leagues used aluminum bats.

Posted by: RickFelt | June 10, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

The glasses are custom Oakley Radars with prescription lenses added.

Posted by: GoingGoingGone | June 10, 2010 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Here's another great aspect of the Strasburg Effect: After tonight's game against the Pirates, 3 of the next 5 games will be nationally televised. 2 of those games will actually feature Stras (6/13 - TBS, 6/18 - MLBN), and the third will be a game in which it was merely speculated he would play (6/19 - FOX).

If he pitches every fifth DAY up until the end of July, and the hype machine continues chugging along, then the Nationals may be playing every fourth/fifth game in front of a national television audience for the next two months. After that, the Nats may be playing in front of a national audience about once a week until early September. That's a national broadcast schedule that would humble even the Yankees.

Nothing helps more in building a broad fanbase than national exposure (other than winning consistently, of course). Look what it's done for the Braves (TBS) and the Cubs (WGN).

Posted by: jmorrisa | June 10, 2010 6:08 PM | Report abuse

If the way they talk to outsiders is any indication, the Nats bullpen might be one of the most fun places to work in this city. Clippard & Storen sound like great guys.

Posted by: ouij | June 10, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Ty Clipp is awesome. Superb performer and seems like a pretty cool guy. It's good to see the team getting more exposure. Not to mention they are playing pretty good ball.

Posted by: ridgely1 | June 11, 2010 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Junkies are funny, but other than Lurch, they know jack about baseball. It's like talking sports with my grandma.

Posted by: Hondo5 | June 11, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Agreed, Lurch knowns baseball, but I remember them asking each other who Jose Reyes was last summer.

Posted by: Burruano23 | June 11, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

knowns=knows. That being said, I don't think Lavar Arrington knows anything about baseball either.

Posted by: Burruano23 | June 11, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

"Junkies are funny, but other than Lurch, they know jack about baseball. It's like talking sports with my grandma."

Kinda funny how things change. The Junkies used to be a sports show on talk radio, now they're a talk show on sports radio...

As for the LaVar comment, point taken, but it's nothing compared to how little any of them seemed to know about hockey. Listening to the personalities on both stations try to learn the sport in the middle of last season's win streak was painful - it got to the point where Overtime on 106.7 gave a weekly spot to a call in Caps Fan just so somebody on "sports radio" knew about something other than football and basketball.

Posted by: crashinghero | June 11, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

I maintain that the ignorance about hockey continues to be understandable in an area where mass participation in the sport is still pretty low. Every kid in the DC/MD/VA plays touch football and pickup basketball. Lots of them play soccer and little league baseball. Relatively few play youth hockey.

Posted by: ouij | June 11, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

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